US: Florida ex-felons get back their right to vote

             By Vakkas Dogantekin</p>  <p>ANKARA (AA) - In the U.S. state of Florida, a law is taking effect this week restoring the voting rights of nearly 1.5 million ex-felons. </p>  <p>People with past felony convictions in Florida are now eligible to vote in elections, a milestone in the state's history, under a constitutional amendment that passed last November.</p>  <p>The measure excludes people convicted of murder and sex crimes.</p>  <p>Whether the influx of newly enfranchised voters will sway close races depends on whether they show up at the polls. The Florida Rights Restoration Coalition, a group that championed the initiative, has already started coordinating a voter education campaign.</p>  <p>With its 29 electoral votes, the Sunshine State has played a pivotal role in a number of elections, including the 2016 presidential race -- which Donald Trump narrowly won in Florida -- and the infamous “hanging chad” botched race between George Bush and Al Gore in 2000.</p>  <p>In the latter, a Supreme Court decision ended the Florida recount, giving the presidency to Bush.

Critics of the disenfranchisement law pointed to its disproportionate impact on minority communities, calling it racist.